The ability to access and analyse data is a skill that no organisation or school can do without. “We collect data on everything: participation and satisfaction rates, performance, attitudes, likes and dislikes, student learning, growth and gains. We use multiple platforms to aggregate, track, plot and measure trends, constantly reflecting and interrogating what is seen. Data drives and challenges us. We use data as part of the evidence that informs, plans and drives the changes needed to bring about improvement,” said Helen Carmody, Principal at Korowa Anglican Girls School.
She added that at Korowa, the School continuously evaluates everything against its values of courage, respect, integrity and service, and it tests the relevance of its decisions against its commitment to connection, learning and excellence. “Data analysis ensures we avoid distraction and complacency, staying true to our purpose and mission, always placing girls at the centre of our decision making.”
Over the past few years this has resulted in new programs at Korowa, such as new elective subject offerings, new school structures, new staffing structures and career and professional learning opportunities for teachers, new pastoral care models, new experiential learning programs and a defined scope and sequence for wellbeing, leadership and service. It has included external partnerships with schools, universities, industry and not for profits, and academic programs that focus on skills progression, whether that relates to team work and social skills, or the skills of literacy and numeracy.
“Assessment linked to data has enabled more meaningful communication with parents and girls and opened conversations about learning,” says Ms Carmody. “This year, we introduced continuous online reporting and improved parent communication through social media and portal connectivity. The School has also adopted a relentless focus on high impact teaching strategies, feedback loops for girls and teachers and increased the ways in which students, parents and community can have a voice and a connection to the School and each other.”